WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW

Last updated: Monday 22 November 2021  

 

Links to specific updates:

Veg scheme updates Christmas arrangements and closing dates

Farmers' market updates. Come and find your ethical, edible gifts!

Volunteering at our growing sites 

Operational changes to keep you safe

 

 

Veg scheme arrangements

Covid safety

To keep you, other veg scheme members and our staff as safe as possible, please continue to maintain social distance and wear a face covering when collecting your bags from enclosed spaces, including the staffed collections at the Old Fire Station and Hackney City Farm.

Christmas on the veg scheme

Things work differently at the turn of the year. Here’s a quick rundown and we'll add more detail soon. If you have any questions, do ask.

The bags we deliver on 22/23 December...

...will be double-value bags, containing more fruit and veg than usual and higher-value seasonal goodies. If you don’t want your double-value bags, you can book holiday or donate through the Food Credit Scheme. (NB, if you choose to donate that week, you'll be donating double your bag value.)

Collection point opening times may be shorter during the week beginning 20 December. We'll update this page as soon as we know more. 

Please collect promptly. Any uncollected bags will be given to local charities to prevent food waste and feed those who need it. 

If your bag is missing, please tell us by 11am on Friday 24 December and we'll do our best to deliver a replacement bag to you.

You'll have no bags to collect on 29/30 December...
...as the veg scheme will be closed and the farmers will take a well-deserved break.
 

From Wednesday 5 January...

... everything will be back to normal.

 

Collection point opening times

We don't yet know of any changes to opening times over the holidays, but watch this space...

 

The Growing Communities office will be closed from 11am on Friday 24 December till 9.30am on Tuesday 4 January.

 

Don't want your bags?
Our Food Credit Scheme is the best way to donate your bags. It's more effective and less wasteful than leaving unwanted bags at your collection point. The money goes into a central pot, then we deliver fresh, organic produce when and where it’s needed directly from GC HQ, usually to Hackney Food Bank. Book a week off or a donation here.

Collection point information
Check your weekly emails for information about changes to collection arrangements. Log into your account to check your padlock code.

If you are a member of the veg scheme and need to contact us, please email us

Want to sign up to our scheme?

Fill in our joining form here. If you'd like to sign up our waiting list to hear when places come up at our closed or potential collection points, please give us your details here.

 

 

Farmers' market

Market is open every Saturday 10am - 2.30pm 

Check our main Market page to see who will be there this week.

Christmas at the market

Choose seasonal, low-impact food (high-welfare organic turkeys and geese, potatoes, sprouts, parsnips and all the trimmings) and gifts at the morket, such as cheeses, chocolates, kimchi, local honey, jams, dried mushrooms and more.

* Christmas meat orders Fabienne at Galileo Organic Farm is taking advance orders now. Pick up a menu at the stall then send her your order by email. Collect from the market on Saturday 18 December or other dates by arrangement. Still available: turkeys, geese, gammon joints, pies and all her usual offerings

The market will be closed on Saturdays 25 December and 1 January, then reopen as normal from Saturday 8 January.

If you'd like to receive weekly email updates about the farmers' market and other GC activities, please use the Subscribe to our mailing list box at the bottom of this page.

 

 

Volunteering at our growing sites

We pause the volunteer programme in December and January, as there is less to do on the sites.

To volunteer at our Hackney market gardens after February 2022, email us to join the waiting list. Our grower Sophie will be in touch to book you in when a slot is available. We no longer accept walk-ins. You might also want to check out Capital Growth's  list of London gardens that usually welcome volunteers.

We are unable to offer volunteering at our Dagenham Farm as we do not have enough staff and resources. Click here to receive email updates with news from the farm.

 

GC’s heightened hygiene precautions 

Growing Communities staff are working hard to protect our members, market customers, ourselves and our families from the Covid-19 virus  

We’ve been taking extra precautions in our packing and delivery operations to minimise the risk of transmitting the virus.

Veg packing: All staff have been trained in Coronavirus hygiene. All staff wash hands before the pack starts and wear gloves while packing. Staff know not to touch their faces or phones during the packing. All staff wash hands according to official public health guidelines before and after eating or any breaks. We have minimised staff in the office to avoid unnecessary foot traffic during the pack.

Veg delivery: The delivery van is cleaned when drivers change over and delivery staff have been trained in how to minimise the potential for virus transmission. 

Market: We have spaced out the stalls to allow for quicker shopping and safe queuing. Stallholders are offering cardless transactions wherever possible and have their own hand sanitisers. Please make use of the hand-washing facilities and sanitiser as you leave the market.

Our farm and growing sites: Our growers are washing hands and tools regularly, cleaning gloves frequently and have been trained in Coronavirus hygiene. 

Please help us! The veg scheme operates via public collection points so we ask you to take all precautions for public spaces including wearing a mask, bringing your own hand sanitiser or sanitiser wipes to wipe your hands after collecting your bags. Please remember to wash your hands after unpacking your veg (and fruit) at home as well as washing all fruit and veg before use as usual.